PGF honors Dr. Karl S. Kruszelnicki as its Person of the Month for March 2003.
Dr. Kruszelnicki is the Julius Sumner Miller Fellow at Sydney University. The distinguished honor belies the fact that Dr. Karl touches ordinary people’s lives by educating them in the world of science through his weekly Science Talkback show, Great Moments in Science. The program is so informative and enjoyable that whenever the announcer gives out the phone number so many calls come in that the ABC switchboard crashes!
We believe that Dr. Karl exemplifies what is best in education, informing and helping us grow through an enjoyable dialog that makes the complicated real. How many of us have been motivated by a particular teacher. It’s that teacher that brings the subject home for us. We believe Dr. Karl’s example will be the seed that develops the scientists and dreamers of tomorrow. For this we honor him.
Dr. Karl’s media career began in 1981, when he started presenting ‘Great Moments In Science ‘ on Double J to pay his way through medical school. Since then, his media career has exploded from radio to include TV, books, newspapers, magazines, scripting, professional speaking, and of course, the Net. His science homepage (which has well over 4 million words on it) gets about 450,000 pages downloaded each week (click here to visit…).
He made his TV debut in 1985 as the presenter of the first series of Quantum. Since 1986 he has reported science as a regular on the Midday Show, Good Morning Australia (including a full-time stint in 1991-2 as the TV Weatherman and science reporter). He has completed three series of Second Opinion (medical/science program) on SBS. Dr. Karl also popularizes science on radio stations across Australia, for several hours each week.
In 1996 Dr. Karl was invited by the United States Information Agency to be a Distinguished Foreign Guest in their International Visitor Program. Previous Alumni of this program include Julius Nyere, Anwar Sadat, Indira Ghandi and Margaret Thatcher. As part of this program he visited NORAD, Dryden Air Force Base and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory – and got to sit in the front seat of an SR-71 Blackbird.
In August 2000 Dr. Karl was one of first eight Australian Apple Masters to be announced (there are fewer than 100 in the entire world). The Apple Masters Program celebrates the achievements of people who are changing the world through their passion and vision, while inspiring new approaches to creative thinking.
Away from the media, Dr. Karl has worked as a physicist, laborer, roadie for bands (including Bo Diddley), car mechanic, filmmaker, hospital scientific officer, biomedical engineer (when he designed and built a machine to pick up electrical signals from the human retina), TV weatherman, and medical doctor at The Kids Hospital in Sydney. He speaks at primary, secondary and tertiary institutions, and is an after-dinner speaker, and corporate video writer and presenter.
Dr. Karl’s hobbies include traveling through the outback, family fun, fitness, music, dancing a lot, and writing for 4WD magazines.
Dr. Karl has written 21 books, beginning with Great Moments In Science in 1984. His last four popular science books have all been No. 1 Popular Science best sellers in Australia (according to the New Scientist). His 18th book “Munching Maggots, Noah’s Flood and TV Heart Attacks and other cataclysmic science moments”, made him the best-selling popular science author in Australia.
Dr. Karl has degrees in Physics, Math, Biomedical Engineering, Medicine, and Surgery. In 1995 he took up the position of the Julius Sumner Miller Fellow at Sydney University, spreading the good word about science and its benefits.
His enthusiasm for science is totally infectious and no-one is better able to convey the excitement and wonder of it all than Dr. Karl Kruszelnicki.